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2019 Lok Sabha polls: Maharashtra records 61.30% voter turnout in third phase

The remaining 17 Lok Sabha seats will go to polls on April 29, including all six seats of Mumbai.

lok sabha elections Updated: Apr 24, 2019 00:27 IST
HT Correspondent
HT Correspondent
Hindustan Times
Among those in the fray are union minister Anant Geete, state BJP chief Raosaheb Danve, NCP MP Supriya Sule and former state NCP chief Sunil Tatkare.

On the third phase of polling on Tuesday, Maharashtra recorded a 61.30% voter turnout for 14 Lok Sabha constituencies, sealing the fate of 279 candidates contesting from three regions — Konkan, central Maharashtra and western Maharashtra.

Among those in the fray are union minister Anant Geete, state BJP chief Raosaheb Danve, NCP MP Supriya Sule and former state NCP chief Sunil Tatkare.

The first and second phase polls were held in the state on April 11 and 18 respectively, both registering average voter turnouts in the range of 60%.

The remaining 17 Lok Sabha seats will go to polls on April 29, including all six seats of Mumbai.

After the end of the third phase, voters from 31 of the total 48 Lok Sabha seats in the state have exercised their franchise. Till 6pm, maximum voting was registered at Kolhapur and Hatkanangale constituencies — 69% and 68.50% respectively. In Pune, voter turnout was the lowest at 53%. These are provisional figures declared by the Election Commission (EC).

Overall, polling was conducted peacefully with reports of malfunctioning of EVMs at a few places in Aurangabad and Kolhapur. This led to a temporary disruption of voting until the machines were replaced with another set.

In Aurangabad, district collector Uday Chaudhari ordered a case to be filed against unknown people for uploading a video of a person casting a vote, on the TikTok app.

The police have also arrested a person on the charges of bogus voting in the district.

The big fights

Supriya Sule, daughter of NCP chief Sharad Pawar, is defending her home turf — Baramati. She is facing a tough fight from Kanchan Kul, who is contesting on a BJP ticket. Kul is the wife of Rahul Kul, Rashtriya Samaj Paksha (RSP) MLA from Daund Assembly constituency, which is part of the Baramati Lok Sabha seat. RSP is one of BJP’s allies in the state.

In 2014, RSP chief Mahadev Jankar, who was contesting against Sule, had brought her victory margin down to 69,000 votes, from over 3.36 lakh votes she had got in 2009.

Madha is another seat that has become a prestige issue for the NCP chief. The party has fielded Sanjay Shinde, who is up against BJP’s Ranjitsinh Naik Nimbalkar. Interestingly, NCP heavyweight and sitting MP Vijaysinh Mohite Patil has declared his support to the BJP candidate, making the contest difficult for his own party. Mohite Patil wanted the seat for his son Ranjitsinh, but NCP refused to do so. Mohite Patil had won the seat despite a Modi wave in 2014. Pawar was the MP from the seat in 2009-2014.

Another big battle is in Ahmednagar, between Sujay Vikhe Patil (BJP) and Sangram Jagtap (NCP). The constituency was in the news owing to the defection of Sujay, son of Congress leader Radhakrishna Vikhe Patil, to BJP. Ahmednagar is with NCP as part of the seat-sharing agreement between Congress and NCP and the latter had refused to give up the seat for Sujay. The Vikhe Patils are using all their might to win the seat against Jagtap, a sitting MLA from Ahmednagar Assembly constituency.

Sena heavyweight and union minister Anant Geete is also facing a tough contest from Sunil Tatkare of the NCP in Raigad constituency.

In 2014, Geete registered victory against Tatkare by a thin margin of 2,110 votes. Geete is a six-term MP, two times from Raigad and four times from Ratnagiri Lok Sabha constituency. The seat was merged with some other areas and is now known as Ratnagiri-Sindhudurg.

First Published: Apr 24, 2019 00:27 IST

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